NYPD chief Kenneth Corey touts return to quality of life enforcement

Outgoing NYPD department head Kenneth Corey this week announced the department’s move to step up quality of life enforcement — despite a revolving door criminal justice system that often fails to keep low-level criminals behind bars.

Corey — the NYPD’s senior uniformed police officer, who is set to retire next week — made the comments during a Monday night interview on the show “Cats at Night” with John Catsimatidis on WABC 770 AM

“So we went back to a version of quality of life enforcement,” Corey said of the effort, which began earlier this year. “We started this in the spring and have continued to expand it over time.”

The move marked a return to the zero-tolerance “broken window” policing policies widely credited with reducing crime in the Big Apple in the 1990s.

NYPD Division Chief (center) is seen with a group of other NYPD officers.
Increased quality of life enforcement marked a return to the “broken window” policing strategies that crushed crime in the Big Apple in the 1990s.
Paul Martinka

During an all-hands-on-deck conference call in March with senior officials from across the department — following a violent weekend that included two dozen shootings — the chief urged supervisors to put their officers “in touch with quality of life violators and criminals,” sources told The Post at the time.

Among other things, local “neighborhood coordinators” have shifted from helping detectives investigate unsolved crimes to enforcing quality-of-life crimes, including garbage avoidance and fare evasion, the sources said.

“So officials started looking into this, but remember, we haven’t done that in New York City for quite a number of years,” Corey said during Monday’s radio interview.

“So we really have a whole generation of police officers … probably a third of the department that’s going to be the bulk of the officers that are out there on patrol and have never engaged in this type of policing.

An NYPD Cruiser is seen in front of a Manhattan Target store.
Corey said a “generation of police officers” are now exploring quality of life monitoring for the first time.

“So they need to be taught how to do it – which we did – and now they need to become comfortable with it,” he continued. “They need to know that their elected officials and their superiors and their elected officials have their backs.”

Corey said crime in the Big Apple would drop quickly if the state’s bail reform laws were tightened.

“Take my word for it – a simple change in the law,” he said. “Give judges the discretion to arrest dangerous offenders and crime in New York will go down. It’s not coming down gradually.”

“We know who drives crime in New York City, and we arrest them time and time again,” he continued. “You put these people in jail [and] Crime will go down.”

Two NYPD cops were spotted with their K9 dogs in a New York subway station.
Corey said NYPD officers “need to know” that their elected officers and their own bosses “stand behind them.”
Matthew McDermott

Corey – who joined the NYPD as a cadet in 1988 – acknowledged that some thug cops might be “frustrated” that criminals they’ve arrested for minor offenses are getting back on the streets before the ink dries.

“We have had several instances where officers make an arrest [and] They issue a desk ticket, which is what the law currently requires,” he said. “And then, while they’re still there doing the paperwork, another team of officers brings the same person handcuffed back to the same police building for a new crime. I mean, you can imagine that’s frustrating and demoralizing at the same time.”

Meanwhile, he hailed police officers for working “harder” and “smarter than ever” – and announced a 27% increase in felony arrests compared to the same period last year.

“In fact, they are at a 21-year high. So last time we made so many big arrests [was in] 2001,” he said. “Although we must remember that in 2001 we committed 15,000 more such crimes than we do today. And we also had about 9,000 other cops out there. So fewer cops with fewer crimes, but still more arrests for that crime.”

A police officer talking on her walkie-talkie in a New York City subway station.
Crime in the city’s subway system has risen about 35 percent since the start of the year, the latest statistics show.
Stephen Yang

Still, the latest NYPD statistics, updated Sunday, show a nearly 28% increase in the seven major categories of felony crimes compared to the same period last year — from 88,394 to a total of 112,755 incidents.

Grand larceny, grand larceny auto and burglary recorded the largest increases during this period.

However, homicides are down about 12% year-to-date. Shootings, which aren’t specifically listed under major crime categories, are down nearly 16% year-to-date. Shooting casualties have decreased by almost 15%.

However, transit crime has increased by about 35% – with a total of 2,056 reported incidents this year compared to 1,521 in the same period last year.

Corey said the force knew he, Commissioner Keechant Sewell and Mayor Eric Adams had their back and that police were “more comfortable” addressing quality of life issues.

“And we’re seeing these incidents continue to increase week by week,” he said. “But it will take time. We didn’t get to the position we are in overnight and there is no easy fix.”

https://nypost.com/2022/11/22/nypd-chief-kenneth-corey-touts-return-to-quality-of-life-enforcement/ NYPD chief Kenneth Corey touts return to quality of life enforcement


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